Holiday/Birthday Policy

At Rise Up Singing, we will celebrate:

  • children’s birthdays, unless their family informs us that they do not wish for us to celebrate the child’s birthday;
  • equinoxes and solstices.
  • some of the traditional Waldorf seasonal celebrations.

Due to our commitments to Waldorf curriculum, to daily extended outdoor play, and to ecological sustainability, families will notice an absence of the decorations and crafts that characterize holiday programming at conventional daycare centres. Instead, we read and tell stories, learn poems, sing songs, and draw/paint holiday motifs — and continue spending the bulk of our days playing outdoors (where, of course, children’s own experiences around holidays are integrated into elaborate pretend play).

We will discuss and read/otherwise study holidays that are meaningful to our students and their families. If any family wants to initiate a celebration at the childcare of a holiday — religious, political, personal etc — that is meaningful to them, they are warmly invited to contact Suzanne to make arrangements!

Celebrating a child’s birthday means: singing to them at lunch time, honoring the child at circle time, and the giving of a small gift and a card. Families are welcome but not obligated to send treats; please ask Suzanne about relevant allergies in the group.

Equinox/Solstice and traditional Waldorf festival celebrations: a special meal for lunch, songs/stories, and a seasonal circle time/creation of a seasonal ‘table’/display.

Regarding mythical figures like the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus, which are alive to some families and not to others: we will use language that recognizes diversity of experience, ie “Some families celebrate with Santa Claus. Some families don’t.”

Rise Up Singing will provide opportunities for children to make gifts before the winter break, and before Mother and Father’s Day. However, no children will be made to make anyone a gift, and staff will not make gifts on a child’s behalf. Regarding Mother and Father’s Day, children who wish to make gifts will be encouraged to make gifts for anyone they wish to honour as a parent/caregiver, ie grandparents, stepparents, aunties etc as well as parents.

Regarding Valentine’s Day: if a child wishes to create Valentine’s for their friends, they are welcome to bring them. Nobody is expected or obliged to create Valentines.

Regarding St Patrick’s Day: We do not celebrate St Patrick’s Day at daycare unless a family attending expresses that the holiday is meaningful to them, at which point I will look to that family for guidance on how to meaningfully celebrate the day.